As students prepare to enter the 2020-2021 school year and athletes ready themselves to participate in early-season practices and tryouts, the MHSAA has a released their updated guidelines for fall sports programs. The full text of the release is below.
Dear MHSAA Community,
The Representative Council met this morning to discuss fall sports. Here is a summary of the action taken.
- Approved a “phased-in” approach to fall athletics.
- Eliminated scrimmages in all fall sports; the only occasions where students from different schools would be together is for official games, matches, meets and competitions.
- Finalized the fall sports guidance documents for the safe return to activity. This guidance includes general information along with sport-specific directives for students, coaches, staff, officials and media members. Spectator guidance will be added once those number of individual limits are finalized by the Governor’s office. These documents are posted at mhsaa.com on each sport page and comply with all Executive Orders from Governor Whitmer.
- New competition limits in all fall sports were approved to limit the number of teams and individuals at any one competition site. The concept is fall competition will take place as locally as possible with no large-scale events, invitationals or tournaments. See the fall sport-specific guidance documents for these limits.
- Allowed all low-risk sports to begin practice and competition as scheduled on August 12. This includes golf, tennis, cross country and swimming. Swimming can begin indoor practice and competition once pools are opened with capacity limitations being followed.
- Allowed moderate-risk sports of soccer and volleyball (pending the opening of school gyms) to begin practice as scheduled on August 12 but to delay competition. Decisions on competition timelines (to start or to delay further) would be made on or by August 20.
- Delayed the start of football practice with full player pads and equipment until Monday, August 17. The week of August 10 shall only include practice sessions that consists of conditioning, physical training and skill work but without player equipment other than helmets. This week of acclimatization (August 10-16) is similar to the allowed summer activities with helmets, only, that have been ongoing since June. Decisions on competition timelines (to start or to delay further) would be made on or by August 20.
The MHSAA will continue to be nimble and flexible in these uncertain times. The Council will be meeting regularly and we will continue to provide updates and possible modifications based on the most current information, directives from state government and health department officials and member school feedback.
MHSAA Executive Director